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It is February 1942 and the war in the Atlantic looks grim for the Allied convoys. The 'Great Blackout' has started, leaving the spy centre of Bletchley Park in Buckinghamshire at a loss as to what the Nazis are planning. U-boat Command has changed the Hydra cipher. The Enigma cannot be broken. Cipher experts can no longer eavesdrop on Nazi command, which leaves convoys open for attack by packs of marauding Nazi submarines. Winning the Battle of the Atlantic will surely give Hitler a final victory. And who can stop him?
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Dudley Bernard Egerton Pope was born in 1925 into an ancient Cornish seafaring family. He joined the Merchant Navy at the age of sixteen and spent much of his early life at sea. He was torpedoed during the Second World War and his resulting spinal injuries plagues him for the rest of his life. Towards the end of the war he turned to jouralism becoming the Naval and Defence Correspondent for the London Evening News. Encouraged by Hornblower creator CS Forester, he began writing fiction using his own experiences in the Navy and his extensive historical reseacrh as a basis. In 1965 he wrote 'Ramage', the first of his highly successful series of novels following the exploits of the heroic Lord Nicholas Ramage during the Napoleonic Wars. He continued to live aboard boats whenever possible and this was where he wrote the majority of his novels. Dudley Pope died in 1997 aged seventy one. 'The first and still favourite rival to Hornblower' - Daily MirrorFrom Publishers Weekly:
With a mass of revealing period detail, much action and irreverent humor, Pope here goes above and beyond most World War II thrillers. In the dark winter of 19411942, Lieut. Commander Ned Yorke is ordered, by Churchill no less, to obtain a new Enigma machine and its Hydra cipher from the Germans. The British have the older, Mark II, Enigma, but only a Mark III will enable them to monitor German U-boat wireless messages, a crucial element in the Battle of the Atlantic. Yorke assembles a couple of chums and 20 hands for a daring escapade: as apparent shipwreck survivors they're picked up in the North Atlantic by a U-boat, then overpower its crew and take it over, along with its new Enigma. Their initial success is marred, however, by lack of radio transmission and the real danger, and many adventures, are encountered on their voyage back to Britain. Pope is best known for his swashbuckling Ramage novels but he certainly knows his way around World War II. December 16
Copyright 1985 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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